Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

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Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:57 am

Both New York offices. Leaning toward litigation, though still open to corporate. Also considering T&E and plan to try it out this summer, and give it serious thought if I like the work.

I like PW's client base better -- I'm a big entertainment/arts fan, and could see myself in those fields long-term -- but have heard that PW's hours are worse than Cleary's. The Cleary people I've met also seemed a little more "normal." I also like people who are a little nerdy/intellectual, although I guess that covers both firms pretty well.

itbdvorm
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Re: Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

Postby itbdvorm » Tue Sep 13, 2011 11:33 am

Anonymous User wrote:Both New York offices. Leaning toward litigation, though still open to corporate. Also considering T&E and plan to try it out this summer, and give it serious thought if I like the work.

I like PW's client base better -- I'm a big entertainment/arts fan, and could see myself in those fields long-term -- but have heard that PW's hours are worse than Cleary's. The Cleary people I've met also seemed a little more "normal." I also like people who are a little nerdy/intellectual, although I guess that covers both firms pretty well.


While I can't speak about T&E, Cleary is much more of a player in corporate than Paul Weiss. If you were 70% or greater litigation I'd probably say go PW (especially given your interest in their media and entertainment practice) but if you're closer to 60/40 or 50/50 corp/lit, Cleary will give you more options

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Re: Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 13, 2011 11:41 am

itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Both New York offices. Leaning toward litigation, though still open to corporate. Also considering T&E and plan to try it out this summer, and give it serious thought if I like the work.

I like PW's client base better -- I'm a big entertainment/arts fan, and could see myself in those fields long-term -- but have heard that PW's hours are worse than Cleary's. The Cleary people I've met also seemed a little more "normal." I also like people who are a little nerdy/intellectual, although I guess that covers both firms pretty well.


While I can't speak about T&E, Cleary is much more of a player in corporate than Paul Weiss. If you were 70% or greater litigation I'd probably say go PW (especially given your interest in their media and entertainment practice) but if you're closer to 60/40 or 50/50 corp/lit, Cleary will give you more options


OP here -- I'm probably about 70% lit, but what's perhaps more important to me are the cultural differences between the two places. Can anyone speak to that?

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Re: Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 13, 2011 11:51 am

summered at pw. it can be a bit of a sweatshop. certainly not a lifestyle choice by any means, for both their lit and corp practice. i doubt they work more than cleary though. people are pretty normal at pw. can't say there is really one defining culture though. it's pretty typcal for a biglaw firm - people are nice, mostly liberal, not a complete frat-house but people socialize with collegues, etc.

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Re: Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 13, 2011 12:10 pm

OP, you know they only have like five lawyers in entertainment/media group, right? From what I heard, it's really difficult, if not impossible, to get in unless someone quits. I heard a story of a person who waited for 5+ years and eventually gave up and lateraled to other firm.

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Re: Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 13, 2011 12:21 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP, you know they only have like five lawyers in entertainment/media group, right? From what I heard, it's really difficult, if not impossible, to get in unless someone quits. I heard a story of a person who waited for 5+ years and eventually gave up and lateraled to other firm.


OP here -- I was aware of that, but it seems like the entertainment clients crop up in various practice areas even outside the entertainment group.

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Re: Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 13, 2011 12:22 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP, you know they only have like five lawyers in entertainment/media group, right? From what I heard, it's really difficult, if not impossible, to get in unless someone quits. I heard a story of a person who waited for 5+ years and eventually gave up and lateraled to other firm.


yes this is the actual entertainment group. however, all departments work on issues for the big entertainment companies like time warner, etc. the entertainment group does issues that are exclusively entertainment. it doesn't mean that only they work with the entertainment companies. so the litigation dept will still handle their litigation, and the securities group still handles their securities work, etc.

just like the investment management group won't do the m&a or securities work for hedge funds, its the same with the entertainment group. so just like you dont need to be in the invesment management group to work with hedge funds, you dont need to be in the entertainment group to work with entertainment companies. OP made it sound that he/she is not really interested in entertainment work, but rather just wants to work on their matter generally and have them as clients.

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Re: Paul Weiss vs. Cleary?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 13, 2011 4:12 pm

I summered at Paul, Weiss as well so I can only speak to that. I found everyone I met to be extremely affable and helpful. While it may just be that the more antisocial people do not participate in summer events, I was actually shocked at how much I enjoyed the collegial culture. I certainly did not see the "sweatshop" nature that the other summer in this thread is referring to, but I suppose it is certainly possible.

I did mostly litigation work this summer and knew I was leaning towards litigation going in. However, if asked prior to the summer to state a departmental preference, I probably would have said something like what OP said. Since this was the first summer I did legitimate legal work, I really did not know much about what the work entailed. As I learned, litigation and corporate work are so completely different that it is nearly impossible for me to imagine being uncertain in hindsight. This may be obvious to many of you TLS sorts, but I was not very into forums or legal gossip, so I really learned on the fly.

Litigation: lots of legal research and writing, piecing together the law and making logical arguments
Corporate: Zero legal research, little writing, mostly reading through documents, making sure all terms are properly defined, crossing t's and dotting i's, being meticulous and eventually perhaps negotiating deals

My hunch is that OP wants to do litigation and will almost certainly end up there, but (s)he does not know enough to fully commit.

At any rate, I'm done ranting, Paul, Weiss was really great.




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